Sunday, September 11, 2011

Church groups set anti-RH bill rally on Sept.16 in Tagaytay

TRA members at the prayer rally for Cory Aquino
before she passed away
The Tagaytay Religious Association (TRA) will hold a prayer rally on Friday, September 16, in Tagaytay City in protest against the passage of the controversial reproductive (RH) bill.

TRA, an association of more than 70 seminaries, religious houses, retreat centers, schools and monasteries located in Tagaytay and its environs, said the prayer rally will be held from 2:00 - 5:00 pm starting with rosary processions from various locations in the city. The processions will lead to the Lourdes Church where a talk on the RH bill will be delivered to be followed by a mass with Bishop Chito Tagle, the bishop of the Diocese of Imus.

"This event is a collaborative expression of our collective stand against the passage of the RH Bill now debated in the Senate," TRA chairperson Fr. Sam Agcaracar, SVD, main organizer, said in his letter to the members of the association. "Since Tagaytay City is often dubbed as the Vatican City of the Philippines because of its exceptionally big number of religious houses; and also, since it is used to be called a 'character city' by the local government, it is just right to express our sentiments against the bill that many Catholics now perceived as immoral," said former TRA chairperson, Fr. Randy Flores, SVD.

The event with the theme, Lakad-Dalangin para sa Pagpapahalaga ng Buhay, will proceed as follows: 2:00 PM - start of the rosary procession” to Lourdes parish (note: Clusters 1,2 and 3 will assemble near Ina ng Laging Saklolo Parish; Cluster 4 at the SVD Road corner; Clusters 5 and 6 at the Magallanes Drive; Half of the Lourdes parishioners will join clusters 5and 6 and others will wait at the Rotonda area. Please coordinate with your respective barangay captains and officials for the traffic).

3:00 PM - short talk on the RH Bill at Lourdes Parish.

4:00 PM - Holy Eucharistic Celebration

The organizers also announced that "every community and cluster is encouraged to provide a streamer to highlight the theme during the rosary procession," and that each house is asked to encourage also their lay workers and collaborators to participate.

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In relation to the opposition to the RH bill, here's a write-up from the CBCP Online on Wikileaks and US policy on Philippines' population control program:

Washington has been behind a population-control drive in the Philippines for the past 40 years, a leaked State Department cable from whistleblower website Wikileaks revealed.

The leaked cable, authored by former US ambassador Kristie Kenney, offers direct proof for the first time of Washington’s long-armed, behind-the-scenes intervention to force developing countries like the Philippines to limit their populations. Kenney’s July 31, 2008 cable welcomed draft legislation promoting artificial contraceptives, referring to the “reproductive health” (RH) bill, as well as Congress’ decision to allocate $3.38 million and $27 million in 2007 and 2008 for “contraceptive supplies” in the wake of the United States Agency for International Development’s (USAID) decision to “phase down support for condoms, pills, injectable contraceptives and intra-uterine devices.”

“Landmark appropriations and draft legislation reflect increasing commitment within the Philippine Government to further expand and sustain programs started forty years ago with U.S. Government’s assistance through USAID,” Kenney said.

“The U.S. Government continues to be the largest donor in the Philippine population sector supporting efforts to improve local government service delivery and increase private sector contributions to family health outcomes,” she added.

Kenney noted that USAID’s funding for “population and family planning” in the Philippines had gone up to $15 million annually. “The U.S. Government continues to be a leader in population assistance to the Philippines,” she said.

USAID was also helping manufacturers lower the prices of contraceptives, she said. “In parallel, within the private sector, USAID technical assistance enables pharmaceutical companies to launch lower-priced contraceptive products, and to expand choices among consumers with more brands on the market,” Kenney said.

Echoing Henry Kissinger’s infamous National Security Study Memorandum (NSSM) 200, Kenney’s cable noted that the Philippines is already the twelfth most populous country in the world, and is “expected to double its population size by 2044.”

NSSM 200 or the so-called “Kissinger Report” – the declassified document that uncovered Washington’s coercive population control policies – identified the Philippines among several high-population-growth countries that should be subjected to depopulation to protect US commercial interests.

Kissinger, who served as Secretary of State, had warned that population growth in less-developed countries could hamper US access to natural resources.

NSSM 200 recommended a) the legalization of abortion; b) financial incentives for countries to increase their abortion, sterilization and contraception-use rates; c) indoctrination of children; and d) mandatory population control, and coercion of other forms, such as withholding disaster and food aid unless a less-developed country implements population control programs.

During Monday’s Senate debate on the RH bill pro-RH Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago admitted that the RH bill still needs to be cleaned up of all references to population control.

Acknowledging the existence of the “Kissinger Report,” Santiago said a United States-dictated policy on population control was “anathema” to herself and the other RH bill sponsor, Sen. Pia Cayetano.

Kenney has drawn the ire of the Aquino administration for another cable in which she described the late president Corazon Aquino as a “tarnished” and “weak” icon of democracy. In response, Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario said Kenney, who is now assigned to Bangkok, was a “dismal failure” in the Philippines. (Dominic Francisco).

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The so-called Kissinger Report or National Security Study Memorandum (NSSM) 200 Authored by former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, the secret US government document has been Washington’s blueprint for depopulation to ensure unhampered access to the natural resources of developing countries.

The declassified NSSM 200 states that poor countries should limit their populations to prevent anti-imperialist youth from harming US commercial interests.

The Kissinger report recommends:
1) the legalization of abortion;
2) financial incentives for countries to increase their abortion, sterilization and contraception-use rates;
3) indoctrination of children; and
 4) mandatory population control, and coercion of other forms, such as withholding disaster and food aid unless a less-developed country implements population control programs.